Here are the stories that made the news Wednesday:
The Minority in Parliament is daring the president to prosecute persons within the previous administration he accused of bloating contract figures. At the very least, the Minority spokesperson on Finance, Cassiel Ato Forson challenged the president to “name and shame” the persons and companies behind this bloated contract figures and stop engaging in empty propaganda. He was responding to president Nana Akufo-Addo’s claim that the government, after auditing the debts bequeathed to his government, made some GH¢5.7 billion savings.
North Tongu Member of Parliament (MP) Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa has branded the president as an “intolerant” leader after he dismissed the cash-for-seat probe as “flimsy.” The former Deputy Education Minister said president Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s comment at a meeting with journalists Wednesday bastardises the work of the five-member Cash-for-seat Investigative Committee.
The Mother and Baby Unit of the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital in the Ashanti Regional capital, Kumasi, will be commissioned on Friday, January 19, 2018. Joy News’ Seth Kwame Boateng's documentary – Next to Die - highlighting the unnecessary deaths of babies at the country’s second-largest hospital, caused national outrage. The First Lady, Rebecca Akufo-Addo upon watching the documentary, partnered with The Multimedia Group and started the ‘Save a child save a mother’ campaign to raise funds for the construction of a befitting unit.
While he does not believe that the newly appointed Special Prosecutor will provide all answers to issues of corruption, president Nana Akufo-Addo is convinced Martin Amidu will definitely put the fear of God in all public officials nurturing the dreams of becoming corrupt. In his second media encounter a year after being sworn into office the president said Mr Amidu, referred to as the citizen vigilante will prosecute corrupt current office holders as he would to past corrupt officers.
The President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has assured that Ghanaians are safe from any terrorist attacks, although other regions on the continent are experiencing acts of terrorism. During an encounter with the media to mark his first year as president, he said Ghana is not exempt as a target but was hopeful that the efforts being made by the security agencies to protect the country from attacks will yield fruitful results. These efforts, he noted will allow them to nib any such threats of attack in the bud.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has defended his conclusion on the cash-for-seat scandal, saying the work of Parliament’s Investigative Committee does not “shake” his own conviction on the matter. At a meeting with journalists at the Flagstaff House Wednesday, he said he was satisfied with the Trades Minister’s account of events that led to the organization of the Ghana Expatriate Business Awards (GEBA).
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo says the report of the Commission of Enquiry that established some questionable transactions in Ghana’s 2014 World Cup preparation, has never attracted his attention since assuming office. “I have forgotten about the 2014 paper…it has not been very much on my radar,” the president confessed when he was asked a question by Patrick Osei Agyemang popularly called Countryman Songo during the presidential encounter with the media at the Flagstaff House Banquet Hall, Wednesday.
The rising unemployment, especially among the youth is fast becoming a national security issue, a senior lecturer at the Political Science Department of the University of Ghana has said. Dr. Evans Aggrey-Darko is concerned these unemployed youth may soon see successful people as the reason for their woes. “…because now when you are doing well, you become a target, people see you and they perceive you as part of the problem in society”, he stated.
The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) has been tasked to collect in excess of GH¢39bn as taxes for the 2018 fiscal year. In 2017, the authority collected GH¢32.4bn as against a target of about GH¢ 34bn, representing 97 percent. Mr Emmanuel Kofi Nti – Commissioner General of the GRA, in an interview with the media at a send-off ceremony for some 138 retired workers of the authority in 2017, said the growth in revenue relative to 2016 was the best in the last five years.
President Nana Akufo-Addo says his government over the past year, has brought stability in the place of the erratic power situation that was inherited from the erstwhile Mahama government. He said the adequate power supply is critical to the operation and success of industry, especially small and medium scale enterprises, which provide the bulk of employment. The President explained that not only is regular supply important, but competitive rates of power are equally important.